#30 YEARS AGO: JOSEP CARRERAS BACK TO BARCELONA AFTER HIS HEROIC BATTLE AGAINST LEUKAEMIA
Thirty years ago today, on 27 February 1988, Josep Carreras came back to Barcelona as a human hero, after a long fight against leukaemia which forced him in Seattle for a severe, experimental treatment.
At a time in which leukaemia was a much more obscure and frightening disease, he had spent four months at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Centre to undergo a bone marrow autologous transplant. In spite of having a 10% chance of survival, it was the first, concrete step towards life, together with exhausting dosis of chemo and radiotherapy and drugs.
His flight landed at the Barcelona Airport, El Prat, at 2:15 pm. The news of his arrival was shared on the day before, most probably by Montserrat Caballé.
His fans and compatriots had no guarantees that they would have seen him again, and such joyful news pushed many of them, not only opera lovers and admirers of his voice, to go at the airport to specially welcome him back with the warmest affection. Images show a large crowd with special banners.
|Josep Carreras. Memorias "A Viva Voz".|
During the press conference at the airport, Carreras was in a very good mood: his face appeared marked by such tough struggle, but illuminated by hope, by an irreprehensible will to live. Soon after such thrilling atmosphere gained a much bigger dimension: the event was reported by newscasts and newspapers, and the whole world was overwhelmed by joy and gratitude, because he was alive... back home and totally cured.
In 2011 a few friends of the Blog Josep Carerras were involved in a special project, a small collection of records of that special moment titled "Ritorna Vincitor".
Each one tells about how they got emotionally involved and followed all the news, about their shock and their worries. Even though in different ways, all of them stress pretty much the same thing: at the point what really mattered was his life and not the singing. But we had them both. He was back, completely!
Today, thirty years are gone and those memories still touch us so deeply. Thirty years are gone, but as you can see, those beautiful dark eyes and that charming smile are the same. Before such dramatic experience, he was basically regarded as one of the most admired tenors, and since than, people became more concerned about the man.
Thirty years are gone, and what we have gained is a real hero, on and off the stage. Ecco la bellezza della vita!
VISCA JOSEP CARRERAS!